Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Jacksonville Jaguars
Sunday, October 5, 2008, 8:15 p.m.
Jacksonville Municipal Stadium, Jacksonville, FL
Records: Pittsburgh 3-1, Jacksonville 2-2
Series history: Jacksonville leads 11-8.
Last season: Jacksonville won both meetings.
Five most important things for the Jaguars:
1. Pressure the passer. Everyone else has put the heat on Ben Roethlisberger, why can't the Jaguars? The Steelers are already entering the game as a one-dimensional offense, and if the Jags can put pressure on Ben early, the Steelers may begin their bye week early.
2. Finish the job. Last season the Jaguars ran out to big leads on Pittsburgh, only to watch the Steelers charge back late. The Jaguars defense has been abysmal in the fourth quarter this season, and they need to garner a new identity.
3. Run it anyway. The Steelers will likely put safety Troy Polamalu in the box to stop the Jaguars rushing attack, and force the game on the arm of David Garrard. Jacksonville needs to stick with their strength, and that's running the football, even if the Steelers have 11 men in the box.
4. Special teams must be special. Pittsburgh had one of the worst coverage units in the league last year, but they have been solid in 2008. The Jaguars have the best special teams in the NFL, and they must flex their muscle in this area.
5. Tackle. It sounds simple, and it is, but the Jaguars defense needs to tackle the ball carrier. Jacksonville has missed a myriad of tackles early on this season, and the Steelers wide receivers had a field day against them in the playoffs last year.
What to look for:
1. Heath Miller in the end zone. Miller is a major mismatch for the Jaguars, and it's more than likely he'll score in this one.
2. Look for blitzes from everywhere, for both teams. The Jaguars will try anything they can to hit Ben Roethlisberger, and the Steelers will do whatever they can to confuse David Garrard.
3. Look for three interceptions. Although these are considered very good quarterbacks, look for the defenses to combine for three picks.
4. Look for trick plays by the Steelers. Pittsburgh is at a talent disadvantage in this game with all of their injuries and they may need to "pull something out of a hat." Don't be surprised by reverses, wide receiver options, or some other trickery.
5. Look for Freddy T. to go over 100 yards. Taylor always plays well against the Steelers, and why should this game be any different?
Charlie Bernstein is the Editor-in-Chief of Sports Media Interactive, covering multiple teams in the National Football League, NCAA, and National Basketball Association. Charlie is a regular syndicated contributor to FoxSports and Sirius NFL Radio, and has been featured on the NFL Network. Charlie is also a member of the Pro Football Writers of America. Feel free to contact him -HERE- with questions or comments.
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